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  1. #1
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    Dec 2009

    Default Review: Double Dhamaal, but half the gags

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    One more Friday and yet another sequel gets unleashed on an unsuspecting audience. Double Dhamaal, follows four years after the original hit the screens; a quirky comedy made on a low budget, Dhamaal was loaded with crisp, clean humor and minimal vulgarity. Optimism levels are high, director Indra Kumar has a great track record for delivering hits and the plot is already in place. The foundation has already been laid. A clever scriptwriter just needed to build on it.

    Comic capers built on gags tickle the funny bone, when they rely on vulgarity and crass over-the-top humor; it's like skating on thin ice. The cast doesn't fall on their butts, but they don't succeed in carrying the film forward effortlessly either.

    For those who missed the first one, it was all about the crazy antics of Ritesh Deshmukh (Roy), Aashish Chaudhary (Boman), Arshad Warsi ] (Adi) and his dithering moronic brother Jaaved Jaffery (Manav). Sanjay Dutt is the crooked ex-cop who has now turned into a smooth con. Let the antics begin…

    Even as this foursome of idle losers is desperately trying to think up innovative ways to turn millionaires overnight, they run into their old foe Sanjay Dutt. Dutt roams around in snazzy cars, sports the gorgeous arm candy Mallika Sherawat (Kamini), and even has a loving younger sister Kiya (Kangana Ranaut ]). What more could a man ask for? Time to get even…

    But the losers seem to be having a hard time. Every prank seems to backfire on them. Will their luck ever change? Or is that material which producers Ashok Thakeria and Indra Kumar are squirreling away for the third part. We sincerely hope not.

    Double Dhamaal suffers from a malaise commonly found in almost all sequels. It's an overdose. Our characters don't talk, they shriek at each other. Or they yell at the top of their voices. The cuss words are there in every sentence. Double-meaning dialogues, jokes with ill-concealed sexual innuendos, and from the first scene itself, our protagonists in a state of hype. They slap, they punch, they kick. Obviously the director believes one can never have too much of slapstick

    The first half of the film has been shot in Mumbai and has the usual underworld 'types' which includes a gargantuan Satish Kaushik playing a don called Batabhai. Midway through the film the dusty streets of Mumbai are replaced with Macau. Nothing else changes!

    Just when one feels all hope is lost, the film picks up pace. The story twists and turns and the last twenty minutes of the film managed to evoke a few laughs.

    Sanjay Dutt plays his usual goofy self .His clumsy stagger, poker-faced dialogue delivery and wicked smirks provide a much needed break from the endless hysteria, a trademark characteristic of Double Dhamaal. And there are the insider jokes on hit films such as DDLJ, Guzaarish and Peepli Live. The one on Taare Zameen Par though is in really bad taste. There's a fine line between being snide, or being crude. Director Indra Kumar obviously doesn't think so.

    After many veiled references to Munni and Sheila, Mallika Sherawat is seen gyrating to 'Jalebi Bai'. Despite the sensous pout, the toned body and an adequate skin show this item number fails to titillate. Mallika Sherawat needs to re-invent herself real soon.

    Kangana Ranaut doesn't flaunt much skin and has really worked hard on her dialogue delivery. But there's precious little for her to do apart from being inane and coyly flirtatious. Which comes naturally to her!

    The director in true Rohit Shetty tradition makes it clear he intends to make Dhamaal 3. While we hope equally fervently, better sense will prevail.

    Double Dhamaal is a huge disappointment. Especially for those who've seen the first part. And even for those who haven't. Watch it at your own risk.

    ...being a human...

  2. #2
    Runner Up - Admins Awards
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    Dec 2009


    Indra Kumar’s latest release, Double Dhamaal, is a comedy made with a certain audience in mind. This audience is the sort looking for mindless entertainment to get them through the weekend, filled with punch lines and gags that appeal to the lowest common denominators of the cine going audiences. And fortunately, or otherwise, Double Dhamaal is a film that delivers the goods when it comes to that.

    Double Dhamaal takes us back to the exploits of the four con-artists from the first film, Roy (Riteish Deshmukh), Adi (Arshad Warsi), Boman (Aashish Chowdhary) and the moronic Manav (Javed Jaffrey). They’re in dire straits, down to picking people’s pockets in bars to eke out a living, when they spot their old friend Kabir (Sanjay Dutt), riding around in a flashy car and working out of a humongous office. Kabir, as they discover, has quit the police force and become a businessman of sorts by conning a rich woman, Kamini (Mallika Sherawat) into marrying him. The foursome decides that Kabir is their best bet at the filthy rich life they dream of, and start blackmailing him to get partnership stakes in his company. However, their dreams are shattered when they realise that Kabir was the one playing around with them, aided by his partner Kamini and sister Kia (Kangna Ranaut), and has conned them out of a cool few hundred crores belonging to a Mumbai gangster Bata Bhai (Satish Kaushik). When they trace Kabir back to Macau, they seek revenge, starting a game of ‘con banega crorepati’ in the process.

    Double Dhamaal‘s main laughs come from outlandish gags more than clever comedy, with the latter almost absent from the film. So audiences have to giggle at things like the four lead actors doing some terrible Bollywood impressions and people rollicking in sewage having mistaken it for a crude oil find. Satish Kaushik’s Bata Bhai is a throwback to his ’90s era comedy in David Dhawan films, his character, with lines like ‘hit films ke flop heroes‘, almost an updated version of his famous Pappu Pager, from Deewana Mastana. His initial setup, that of a bhai trying to switch over to being a baba, is also an unoriginal gag, a joke floating around since the ’80s when Johnny Lever performed it in his shows under the title, ‘gunda melodies’ (look it up), though Raju Srivastava made this version famous more recently on TV.
    The film’s second half finds comedy mainly in having the four leads dress in various getups, though it’s hard to understand what is so funny about Aashish Chowdhary dressed up in drag, and Riteish Deshmukh performing in blackface, complete with an afro and a chorus of kalia, kalia, kalia everytime he steps on screen, bordering on racism. Javed Jaffrey’s majorly moronic act and Arshad Warsi’s ‘asardar sardar‘ act still manages to liven up things though.

    Double Dhamaal is hardly a film that is riding on its acting laurels. Sanjay Dutt is fairly okay, though he doesn’t get many comic bits to carry, while Arshad Warsi as Adi, seems to be revisiting the same character he’s been playing in the Golmaal series. Riteish and Aashish ham their way through the proceedings. Javed Jaffrey is in the same league, but his manchild Manav does get some of the funniest moments in the film. Kangna Ranaut is okay, though her role is just about that of a prop. The film, thankfully, does devote a lot of screentime to Mallika Sherawat. How Ms.Sherawat carries on in cinema with the most minimal of acting skills is a mystery waiting to be solved.
    Musically, Double Dhamaal is a disappointment. Except for the Oye Oye track, which basically takes its tune from the old tirchi topiwale tune (itself stolen from the Miami Sound Machine’s rhythm is gonna get you), the rest of the music in this film offers nothing memorable. Mallika Sherawat herself will be disappointed by her Jalebi Bai item number.
    Overall – Double Dhamaal does offer up its share of laughs. But they’re few and far in between. Too many gags, too many puns and too few smart situations mean Indra Kumar’s latest is basically Bollywood’s take on a set of loony toons, a one time watch if there’s nothing better you can find.
    ...being a human...



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